Thursday, 8 March 2012

Tuesday 13th March 2012: Lobby Parliament to Save Our Libraries

As another push to defend public services, there’ll be a Lobby for Libraries on Tuesday 13th March 2012 from noon onwards at Central Hall, Westminster.
Supporters of the public library service from all over the country will be meeting to Rally support for the great work of library staff and the services they deliver.
It was legislated that maintaining a comprehensive library service was a vital responsibility of the state in our democracy. Although genuine philanthropy is always welcome, the responsibility falls on the state as the body that is responsible for the most vulnerable members of our society and as the body accountable to this democratic process to ensure that regardless of circumstances, any individual can empower themselves, educate themselves and contribute to society at any point in their lives.
I’ve never been a fan of party politics as I believe the issues should be considered on their own merit, but it is clear to see that this government has not been acting in the best interest of the electorate. Why should they? They were by no means voted in by the electorate so maybe this is some form of resentment for being unpopular.
I might sound paranoid but why would a government, reduce opportunities for education by increasing tuition fees and making cuts to schools, reduce the number of people in employment by almost 1 million and encourage the erosion of terms and conditions so working families cannot support themselves. Further, reduce welfare while encouraging what almost amounted to slavery through companies like Tesco and Poundland under Big Society and reduce funding to the police force so the inevitable increase in crime would go unchecked.
How does this relate to libraries? Libraries educate, libraries help people get back to work, libraries support community business and take children off the streets. Libraries relate to us, they’re a significant part of the antidote to the ignorance; poverty and chaos that this government is creating. And you’ve already paid for it. Unfortunately they’ve taken the money and now they’re saying they’ve spent it on something else.
Not convinced? After eight phases of redundancies amounting to 1,200 post deletions, Westminster, the council who claims to be saving libraries in an unprecedented way has shown minimal innovation in this matter. The great plan to save libraries was first to close St James Library and axe its staff, now phase two will be to reduce staffing across Westminster, Hammersmith and Fulham and Kensington and Chelsea by another 10% as part of the Tri-borough project. Yes, the great innovation of Tri-borough are more staff cuts… repackaged.
With no sign yet of the financial opportunities in Tri-borough, the scheme will save £1million through staff cuts. it’s interesting to note that when proposing the Tri-borough cuts, Westminster councillors were asked if they would consider cutting the wages of those earning over £100,000 by 5% to save £3million and they said no, this wasn’t a significant enough saving.
Your money is being wasted and your voice silenced, please come along on the 13th March at Central Hall Westminster to fight for your future.
The rally will take place from 11.30am at Central Hall Westminster, Storey’s Gate, Westminster, London SW1H 9NH. The lobby of Parliament will start at 2.30pm.
We urge everyone to find out more and sign up to attend via the Speak Up For Libraries website.

You can also follow Speak Up For Libraries on Twitter and on Facebook.
Speak Up For Libraries are a coalition of organisations and campaigners working to protect libraries and library staff, now and in the future.

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